Friday, April 1, 2016

I'm a Christian, but I'm not...

There are some common beliefs that come along with the label "Christian."
Here is my letter to you.

Dear Beloved Unbeliever,

I am a Christian.  But I am not...


This is probably the most common stereotypical label placed on anyone who claims to be of Christian faith.

"Oh, you're a Christian.  So you think you're perfect."

Are you kidding me?  I'm the furthest thing from perfect.  I'm a downright sinner.  My flaws are huge.  But it's because of the awareness of my imperfections that I realize I need God more than anything else in the world.  I know that I fall short of His glory every day - that's why I need His grace.  I need God for the reason that I am not perfect.

If I thought I was perfect, I would think that I don't need, really, who here thinks they are perfect?

Scripture tells us that all of us fall short of God's glory (Romans 3:23); there is not a single human being who can boast about being perfect.  I will make mistakes.  Every day I will fail.  And that's ok.  God doesn't ask perfection of me.  He asks for my best effort.

Yes, I am Christian.  But I am not perfect.  And that is exactly why I need God.

I am a Christian.  But I am not...

A Doormat

Many believe that because I am a Christian, I have to "suck it up and take it."  Whether it's verbal persecution, or wrongful behaviors towards me, it is believed by the world that I should just "take it."  Some non-believers will even quote scripture:

"But I tell you, do not resist an evil person. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to them the other cheek also." Matthew 5:39

"But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." Matthew 5:44

"Wives, in the same way, submit yourselves to your own husbands..." 1 Peter 3:1

"Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying, 'I repent,' you must forgive them." Luke 17:4

One of my least favorite things to hear is a non-believer take scripture and pull it out of context.  Each of these scriptures, if read or quoted without its entirety, can definitely be made to read as though God expects His faithful believers to be doormats.  But, as believers, we know this not to be true of our God.  We are God's most treasured possession, the last thing He wants is for us to "stand there and take it."

There is one characteristic I see in each of these scriptures: dignity.  I see a quality that is worthy of honor and respect.  The easiest thing to do when someone verbally attacks us is to fight back with our own words.  When we are wronged, it is effortless to retaliate or seek revenge.

There is no strength behind retaliation.  It takes nothing to fight back.  The anger within is eager to retaliate.  The true strength is found in dignity.  The fight against the fight takes true strength.

The strength is in the dignity of our character because we are made in the image of God.

We are not doormats.  We are stronger than that.  We don't retaliate because we have strength in God's power.

Submission, forgiveness, and love are characteristics of the strong.

I am a Christian, but I am not...

Free From Temptation 

I'm human.  I have a sinful nature.  I am tempted every day.  Yes, I made Jesus the Lord of my life, but that did not erase temptation.  Even Jesus was tempted (Matthew 4:1-11), and he was perfect!

One of the biggest misconceptions is that because I am a Christian, I am no longer faced with temptation.  If anything, I am faced with more temptation than ever because the enemy specifically seeks to take my heart away from God.  Just like the enemy went after Jesus, or the way he went after Job (Job 1:1-12), the enemy is prowling around my heart, trying to find that one thing that will pull me down and tear me away from God.

Just like those of the world, my nature seeks that which is not good for me.  We all know the cartoons that pictured a little angel on one shoulder and a little devil on the other...well, when we become Christians, that angel and that devil are no joke.

I wish my life was free from temptation.  I wish I could say to you, "I have no idea what that struggle is like," but the truth is, I can stare you in the eyes and say, "I struggle with that, too."

I am a Christian, but I am not...

Judging You

Spend a couple hours with me and you'll hear about everything I've done before, and after, I became a Christian.  I can guarantee that your eyes will jump out of your head and you will think to yourself, "at least I wasn't as bad as her!"

The truth is, I'm a Christian, but I'm not judging you.  I've done some pretty awful things.  I've said some incredibly hurtful words.  Who am I to judge anyone?

"Do not judge, or you too will be judged.  For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."  Matthew 7:1-2

Society likes to throw this scripture at believers, "don't judge me!"  I can promise that a true believer of Christ is not judging you.  We've walked that path.  We've been that road.  We've made bad choices.  We have a list of regrets.  We don't think we're better, and we don't think you're worse.

When I approach you about getting to know God, it's because I've been there.  I know that life.  And I have the solution to your broken heart.

I am a Christian, but I am not...


I've heard so many times, "I don't want to be a Christian because I have to give up the fun stuff."
What fun stuff are you talking about?  The drinking?  The partying?  The drugs?  The sex?  The pornography?  The cussing?

Think about each of those things: each has the potential to lead to dangerous grounds.  I used to drink.  I used to smoke.  I used to party.  I sought attention from other men - even though I was married.  I watched pornography.  I used profanity in place of common words.

I've lived life with God, then without God, and then with God again.  The worst time of my life?  The time when I left God.  Out of boredom is when I found trouble.  My marriage almost ended.  I was seeing another man.  I spent so much money I almost lost our home.  I did everything I could to fill the void in my heart.  Maybe if I drink...maybe if I party...maybe if I flirt...maybe if I smoke...maybe if I spend money...maybe if...maybe if...

My life was filled with boredom, so I tried to fill it with the things the world promises will cure the emptiness.  "Party more!  Drink more!  Go out more!"

The list of things most non-believers are afraid to give up is a list of empty promises.  When the words, "I don't want to give up the fun stuff" come out of the mouth of a non-believer, what is really being said is, "I don't know what else will make me feel good."

Give God a chance to fill your heart and your life with things that will make you feel good.  He will pour so much into your life that you will wonder how you ever lived without Him before.

Life with God is never boring.  He will fill your heart and your life with more than you could ever imagine.  "Boring" isn't in God's vocabulary.

I am a Christian, therefore, I AM...


I am not perfect, but I am not weak. I am not free from temptation, and I am not judging you.

I am a person who seeks love, admiration, fulfillment, happiness, and strength.

I am just like you.



  1. I love your blogs. I can relate to everyone.

  2. Love this, thank you. That is all we all want.

  3. Thank you! Your words are truly refreshing.

    Jen Gonzalez -Boston MA